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Cybersecurity 101

One of the things that continually amazes me as a parent of young(er) children is their ability to quickly understand technology and its uses.  Not only have my children learned the art of swiping to use different devices, but they've also learned how to access apps, take pictures, answer calls (both phone and Skype), and more.  My children could teach their grandparents a lesson or two on how to use technology.

But, as a student of cybersecurity, I have seen a greater need to educate my children - as well as so many others - on the cybersecurity.  This goes beyond posting inappropriate pictures and unfriendly words on social media (although these lessons must also be taught).  This goes into the nature of understanding the benefits and risks of using technology and the privacy lost to it.  The major premise that must be understood in regards to cybersecurity is that information/data is money.  It's value is continually increasing.  We need to secure our information just as we…

Why can't they just be friends?

Why can't my kids just be friends?  I must ask myself this question hundreds of times during the week. 

I thought that having kids relatively close together was going to be great.  They'd have a playmate and an automatic friend.  However, the truth is that - most of the time - they don't get along.  It's not that they're enemies...it's that they drive each other crazy. 

They each want the other one to do what they want to do.  Then, when the other one does what they want, they get mad at them because they wanted to do it themselves.

They don't want to share their toys.  Then, they play together only to then get mad and purposefully break the other sibling's toys.

They want to get the other one in trouble so that they look like the "good" child and get more rewards.  Then they get upset that the other sibling got them in trouble when they *tattled* on them.

At mealtimes, they want to sit where the other one is sitting.  They want the cup the ot…
Here's a Friday First for me, a video!  Let me know what you think about it and if you'd like to see more.  Also, share what your plans are for the weekend to help others figure out what they're going to do.

Thoughts from a non-traditional student

It's the end of the school year for many of us.  My kids are thrilled about this and keep telling me that they're so excited to have the summer off...they don't yet realize that we'll have a new family chore chart and lessons on being a "contributor" to the family!

For me, the end of the school year is also exciting.  It is also the end of my first year back to school for a new degree in Cyber Operations, a degree that is almost the complete opposite of my other degree in Communication and Advertising.  It also was exciting to realize that you really can start learning something new at any age, no matter how long it's been since your last time in school.  With this in mind, I thought I'd do a recap of some thoughts I had during my nontraditional year.
Going back to school is scary.  There's new technology. Not every teacher uses a textbook. You're *often* older than the teachers. There's no easy way to balance school-work-family life. You&#…

Calling all South Dakota Junior & Senior Girls!

Here's a great opportunity for Junior and Senior girls living in South Dakota.  Please share!

❗️❗️ATTENTION ALL JUNIOR AND SENIOR GIRLS❗️❗️ AT&T is sending 15 girls from South Dakota to the Kennedy Space Center! Interested? Here’s all the information you need!👇🏼 pic.twitter.com/KSAkOgD6tz — CybHER Security (@cybher_security) May 4, 2018

Portland's Rose Summit

I have a great passion for working with women to become stronger leaders who are making differences in their communities.  It is with this in mind that I share with you an amazing opportunity for Portland women: the Junior League of Portland's inaugural Women's Empowerment & Leadership Summit.

This leadership summit will be held on May 11, 2018 at the Hilton Downtown Portland and is a day-long leadership and professional development conference open to all women in the Portland and surrounding communities.

The theme is Diversity and Inclusion and the Junior League is honored to feature Tarana Burke, activist and founder of the #MeToo Movement.  The Summit will offer opportunities for workshops, speakers, networking, and camaraderie among women in all stages of leadership around our community.

The Summit is a major fundraiser for the Junior League of Portland and all proceeds from the event support the League's community fund, the 1910 Campaign, with 100% of the money ra…

Don't forget the military child

I have a fierce passion for the military and military families, but there is one aspect of both of these groups that is often forgotten: the military child.

In case you didn't know it, April is the month of the military child.  There are currently about 1.7 million children connected to the military, 75% of whom are school-aged.  Over 80% of these students attend U.S. public schools...so your local schools most likely have a child impacted by military service.

As adults - especially if we are associated with the military - we can have an understanding for military life.  We may not always like it, but we understand the concepts of transition, hurry up and wait, and separations.  These concepts aren't so easily understandable - or explainable - to our children.

The average military child will move every three years (that's 6-9 times during their K-12 years).  They also face numerous separations from one or both of their parents.  These can cause turmoil that need to be add…

Leadership Mom: SWOT Analysis

In business, leaders often analyze our Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats through a SWOT analysis.  So, if we are going to look at our role as moms as being the greatest leadership opportunity to us, let's start with analyzing ourselves and our kids.  Here's the SWOT I developed for my family:

As a doting mother, there are hundreds of strengths that I could put up here for my kids.  Their hugs, kisses, bedtime stories and prayers, the fact that they come to me when they're seeking healing from an injury (physical or emotional), the notes and drawings they make for me, their precious hearts when they try to help me or that they've learned how to use the Keurig to bring me coffee in the morning...I could go on and on.

Now, here's the part where we get honest with ourselves.  Yes, we love our kids and we love our family (or, hopefully, most of the time), but we are not perfect.  Nor should we be perfect.  As we analyze ourselves and our families, we hav…

Leadership Mom: Mission

Continuing on in our Leadership Mom series...

Before we begin to develop our family's Mission Statement, let's take another look at our Vision Statement:
Vision Statement: Our family exists to learn, grow, and live life filled with curiosity, fun, good health, and love for God and all of His creations.
As previously mentioned, this is the ideal of what we would like our family to be (future-focused).  If we were living in a perfect world, this would be us.

The Mission Statement, while similar, describes the why - or purpose - of our organization/family.  It describes what we do and how we do it, as well as our values.  Therefore, the first question I have to ask is, "What does my family do?"  Let's think big picture here.  This isn't the details of daily life: driving kids to activities, going to school, making meals, doing laundry, etc.  Let's think bigger.  Here, you may want to work together with your family to write down some ideas.  You can start wit…